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Man broke two year period of alcohol abstinence at Christmas party then drove

12 month ban for man who drove partner's car whilst over twice the limit

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A Richhill man who drove his partner’s car, without licence or insurance and whilst over the twice the limit, has been handed a 12 month ban.

The 41-year-old’s legal representative told court that after a two year period of abstinence from alcohol, his client drank at a Christmas party and made the “stupid” decision to drive after arriving home.

John Patrick Tasker, of Elm Park, pleaded guilty to driving with excess alcohol, using a vehicle without insurance, no driving licence and taking a vehicle without authority at Armagh Magistrates’ Court, sitting at Newry.

Prosecution outlined that on November 21, at 11.05pm, police received a report of a Vauxhall Insignia being driven erratically on the Northway.

Officers located the car a short time later outside an address on Elm Park in Richhill. The defendant was in the driver seat with the ignition on.

Police noted that both the bonnet and the tyres were warm to the touch. Tasker was observed to be unsteady on his feet and a preliminary breath test was requested resulting in a fail.

An evidential sample in custody gave a reading of 93mg of alcohol in 100ml of breath – over twice the legal limit.

Defence counsel told the court that his client had no licence and that the vehicle in question belonged to his partner.

He stated after a two year period of abstinence from alcohol, Tasker drank at a Christmas party and made the “stupid” decision to drive after arriving home.

Deputy District Judge Des Perry disqualified the defendant from driving for 12 months and ordered that he pay a fine of £600, along with the offender’s levy of £15, within 26 weeks.

On the charge of taking a vehicle without authority, due to the nature of the offence, Tasker was handed a conditional discharge for 12 months.

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